- October 18, 2017
- Posted by: Mick Antoniw AM
- Category: Featured, Latest News
Pontypridd Assembly Member Mick Antoniw has welcomed the Welsh Government’s decision to freeze student tuition fees in Wales and to increase the threshold at which student loans are repaid.
The Welsh Government’s announcement, which follows consultation with Welsh Universities and the National Union of Students, means that the maximum tuition fee will remain at £9,000 and is in response to the uncertainty in England around university funding and the limitations placed on the Welsh Government by HMT.
The Welsh Government has also announced that the repayment threshold will increase from £21,000 to £25,000 on 01 April 2018 and that this will apply to those students who have already taken out and will take out loans for tuition and living costs for full-time and part-time undergraduate courses in the post-2012 system.
Mick Antoniw said:
“I know from my discussions with the National Union of Students, Wales and with local student leaders at the University of South Wales that student fees are a huge concern. I believe also that rising fees are a potential disincentive for many people who want to go to university.
“This decision by the Welsh Government is extremely welcome. It ensures that we do not burden Welsh students with increased debt as is happening across the border. Raising the threshold at which a loan is repaid also gives students some breathing space to allow them to find a job at a decent rate of pay before repaying the loan.
“Wales already had the most generous student offering in the UK, but with these announcements, together with a renewed commitment to maintenance grants in Wales, the Welsh Government is demonstrating its commitment to an education system, which students from all backgrounds can benefit from.”
USW Student Union President Megan Wilson said:
“Today’s announcement demonstrates that the Welsh Government agrees that students should not be expected to shoulder the burden of austerity.
“Maintaining the tuition fee cap at £9,000 and increasing the repayment threshold to £25,000 will also mean that graduates will not be required to pay back a penny of their student loans until they’re earning a decent wage.”